Since its release last year, the iPhone Twitter client Tweetbot has picked up some ardent supporters. One thing that has been missing, however, was an iPad version. That changed today with the release of Tweetbot for iPad, alongside a 2.0 upgrade to the iPhone client. We took a look at both apps, and were quite pleased with what they had to offer.
On the iPad side, you won't find the shifting, sliding panels of the official Twitter iPad client anywhere. Instead, Tweetbot is laid out for quick and efficient access. In landscape mode, your Twitter stream is presented in a wide panel, with a list of customizable shortcuts to the left. Turn the iPad into portrait mode, and the shortcuts condense down to their icons. Tweetbot's familiar behaviors are all present: swiping a tweet to the right reveals any conversation stream it may have been a part of, while swiping left will bring up a list of replies. Inline images are now included, offering a quick glimpse at content without having to tap a link, while an overlay at the top of your stream will notify you of the number of your unread tweets (the latter option can be disabled by the user). Readability support is now also included for a clean, streamlined look at any linked pages. What we noticed most of all, however, was the speed of the app. Lists and tweets loaded quickly, and the UI never felt laggy — even on a first-generation iPad. Our one complaint was the way in which the app lets you switch between lists. On the iPhone client, simply tapping the name of the active list or timeline brings up the selection menu. On the iPad, there's a dedicated icon to the left, and those used to the iPhone app may find themselves tapping the name rather than the icon.
The 2.0 upgrade to the iPhone client largely adds features, like inline images, that are already present in the iPad version. Other changes include a modified link behavior: in the upgrade, links are colored blue, and are accessible via a single tap, where they'd previously required a double-press. An update to the DM interface also provides an iMessage-style UI overhaul.
If you'd like to try out the latest versions of Tweetbot, the apps are available now for $2.99 each (the iPhone 2.0 upgrade is free for current owners). Unfortunately, developer Tapbots elected to not roll them together into a single universal app, but if you spend as much time in your Twitter client as we do, the outlay may seem a small price to pay.